The Geopolitics of Statism and America; And Killing an American Ambassador

I don’t think anyone ought to be President. Nobody ought rule over anyone else; no exceptions, no dispensations.

Given that, I also know that’s not how the world is, as primitive as it still is, and I never discount geopolitics and how it shapes history. Moreover, I also recognize that things have evolved.

Here’s a rather vile image. So beware, in case you don’t wish to see it.

Jews, Christians, Hindus, and Buddhists will look at it and do just what the quote below it says they’ll do: because they have evolved in social Enlightenment, and there’s no other explanation for it.

No One Murdered Because of This Image

No One Murdered Because of This Image

I waited and waited to see someone, anyone, with real real influence besides The Onion give sway to something like that. Even peripherally. Even to make very important global distinctions in the evolution of social fantasy. Nope. Not that I saw. Nothing but pussies, everywhere. Everywhere, people are inflicted with pussy virus.

Here you have the dominant cultural religious fantasies of the modern world being degraded in the most profane and disrespectful way…and, and: basically, nothing in terms of violence. Nothing: NO ONE MURDERED BECAUSE OF THIS IMAGE. Let me elaborate and emphasize. Not a single hair on a head was disturbed. No cell call was made saying “honey, take the kids and…” ….zero, zilch, nada. What we have, here, is an evolved world with four very prominent religions who live in peace in that context (wars have not been fought over religion in modern times). …While monkeys—some of whom weren’t even alive or shitting in diapers on 9/11/2001 are now primitively showing how monkey they are—not even masturbating in public like monkeys. Monkey children are having it on their terms while Obama’s diplomates suck cock.

Here’s what was written.

WASHINGTON—Following the publication of the image above, in which the most cherished figures from multiple religious faiths were depicted engaging in a lascivious sex act of considerable depravity, no one was murdered, beaten, or had their lives threatened, sources reported Thursday. The image of the Hebrew prophet Moses high-fiving Jesus Christ as both are having their erect penises vigorously masturbated by Ganesha, all while the Hindu deity anally penetrates Buddha with his fist, reportedly went online at 6:45 p.m. EDT, after which not a single bomb threat was made against the organization responsible, nor did the person who created the cartoon go home fearing for his life in any way. Though some members of the Jewish, Christian, Hindu, and Buddhist faiths were reportedly offended by the image, sources confirmed that upon seeing it, they simply shook their heads, rolled their eyes, and continued on with their day.


You’re welcome to do likewise with me for publishing it and I won’t fault you, because what I have done may be a bit too much and I get that; but I’m just a bit perturbed. I’ll not get into the politics of it. I’ll just say this:

When it comes to the indiscriminate slitting of Muslim throats—which it will, eventually—I will not lift a finger to do anything about it. I will not raise a word in protest. I’m by no means hoping for that. But after 11 years since 9/11, I’m coming to think that in geopolitical terms, that’s more likely than ever. Unfortunately, it won’t by any means only involve the monkeys.

That’s all.

Greg Swann has a video about this from a different take, as a Catholic atheist. I think he’s right. Basically, of all people on the whole planet, Muslims love themselves genuinely the very least. And I agree. They can’t possibly love themselves, at least whole swaths of that hive, anthill, whatever thing you want to call it.

There’s a 4-word lesson to the video: Fuck You. I Quit. Count how many times that comes through.

One way to think about it is for yourself. That’s what I always do. Kinda why I’ve been blogging.

[For an update, please see: Lemons to Lemonade Documentary – Ed]

Update: Kinda had a feeling the cloister of the “International paleo Movement Group” on Facebook was a total waste of time and that its creator was a total pussy boy. Within about 2-3 minutes of posting a link to this post, I had more than a dozen outraged comments and as soon as I responded in kind, I was banned. Bye. Now I’ll go delete the post promoting you.

[For an update, please see: Lemons to Lemonade Documentary – Ed]

Richard Nikoley

I'm Richard Nikoley. Free The Animal began in 2003 and as of 2021, contains 5,000 posts. I blog what I wish...from health, diet, and food to travel and lifestyle; to politics, social antagonism, expat-living location and time independent—while you sleep—income. I celebrate the audacity and hubris to live by your own exclusive authority and take your own chances. Read More


  1. Gordon Shannon on September 17, 2012 at 15:51

    I take the point, but I’m somewhat persuaded by the argument that the Muslims in question aren’t actually rioting because of the video. I know I know – everyone (i.e. the media, the politicians, and some Muslims at the riots) say that’s why they’re rioting. But really, the video was released in June, and then, all of a sudden, its the cause of global riots on 9/11. Sounds fishy. A bit *too* fishy. And in the case of the initial riots (I think they were restricted to Egypt, Tunisia, Libya, and a couple of other places) the report is they were a) planned, and b) orchestrated by militia/military forces. I know a major in the US Army who concurs with that assessment (a professor at West Point).

    The question then is: what is gained by focusing attention, through the mechanisms of state/corporate power, on the video? A whole host of things, including diverting attention away from US foreign policy, making the Republicans and Conservatives the usual scapegoat in moral/civil issues, allowing Obama to appeal for peace and understanding (and thus appear as a peace president leading up to the election, rather than a war president), etc.

    • Richard Nikoley on September 17, 2012 at 16:03

      I know all of that, Gordon, but wanted to make that post geopolitical and cultural rather than event oriented.

      My take is that yea, it was scheduled.

      Why? Because culturally, the Muslim world gets stinkier by the minute, after 3-4 centuries of decline since their pinnacle.

      Think of it. No doubt, just as in our schools where you’re taught about Honest Abe and other such steaming in doctrinal bullshit, Muslims are taught about how they almost pulled off ruling the whole world.

      They can’t get over it. They refuse to compete as a culture (while individuals excell because they take it into their own hands, which I humbly salute every time). It’s getting to where innocent people are going to feel the sword. I will no longer speak put against that. Done.

      They will not trian their monkeys. Well that’s it, then.

      • Gordon Shannon on September 17, 2012 at 17:59

        Yeah, point taken. Everyone has a limit to how much shit they are willing to analyze before they accept it for what it is: a pile of shit. We’re probably at the point culturally and politically where the best that we can do is duck and cover.

      • Richard Nikoley on September 17, 2012 at 18:11

        Yea, I’m just completely done pussy footing around any of it. Done. Think is, I can ridicule all other religions all day long and all I get it that I’m being impolite.

        Try that with islam. It’s like they are the new entitled.

        Fuck them. Go police yourselves. I’m not going to do anything about it, but I will never lift a finger or breath a word of protest, no matter what happens.

        Evolve or die.

  2. Christian Madajski on September 17, 2012 at 16:11

    I’m not sure which one made me laugh more, the picture from The Onion or Greg Swann’s crazy facial expressions. Regardless, the article was most interesting.

    • Richard Nikoley on September 17, 2012 at 16:49

      Yea, Greg makes me laugh and cringe too, but I could’t help but listen.

  3. mark on September 18, 2012 at 06:43

    Interesting letter…

  4. dr. gabriella kadar on September 17, 2012 at 16:47

    Hives? Anthills? Please don’t insult the bees and ants. They are fascinating constructive organisms.


  5. Amy Haines on September 17, 2012 at 17:19

    I was intrigued by what Whiskey had to say about the Muslim tendency to attack at the slightest provocation.

    • Richard Nikoley on September 18, 2012 at 06:33

      Amy, yes, this is precisely the cultural component I was talking about in reply to other posts. For whatever convergence of reasons and the right time in history, all of these other cultures have made the jump to putting religion in the backseat. So far as I know, only in the various muslim cultures is it still in the driver’s seat.

      • Amy Haines on September 18, 2012 at 06:56

        So far as I know, only in the various muslim cultures is it still in the driver’s seat.

        Exactly. There are thousands of Christians living in Syria, Egypt, India (granted not a majority Muslim nation), Iran, Iraq, etc. who do not erupt with violence, murder, and terrorism at the slightest insult, or even when the insults lay violence, murder, and terrorism at their very doorsteps.

        Muslims won’t attack China or Russia (both of whom equally offend Islam according to the rhetoric of Western dhimmitude) because China and Russia would annihilate any faction that sought revenge.

        America is weak and in dhimmitude, leaving us vulnerable to attacks rhetorical and physical. Our leadership is spineless and willing to placate an enemy rather than ignore or eradicate him.

  6. Yasmine Sheaito on September 17, 2012 at 17:29

    I’m an Arabic Muslim atheist, and I live in Egypt. I personally know friends and family members who support the riots and who are incredibly enraged about the film (that they have not seen, by the way, they only heard their prophet was bashed and took to the streets with all their drama and sexual frustration). Yes, it probably was scheduled, but the fact that these people will resort to violence, or even to protest only, just because someone criticised, mocked, insulted, or disrespected their religious views is what makes them “monkeys”.

    Innocent people already take the sword under the hands of Muslims; they are bullied, stripped of their rights, and assaulted/killed. I live in a neighbourhood that’s infested with Salafi Muslims (a word that literally means “regressive”) and I am unable to practice any activities that would even insinuate that I do not believe in Islam (like playing music in my own apartment during prayer-time). There are many Christians in the neighbourhood and during the Muslim month of fasting, they are not allowed to eat/drink in public (there’s even a law against it). The Muslim religion is the only religion taught in any school in Egypt, and if you ask the school to exclude your kid from the religion class, you can be sure that they will be bullied and assaulted. There’s Islam-induced violence in everyday life in the Arab world.

    Furthermore, the Quran clearly states that a Muslim who decides to renounce their religion and speak against it should take the sword. It also clearly states that on judgement day, Christ will “come back to Earth” to lead the Muslims and Christians of the world into war against the Jews (don’t ask me about the other non-Abrahamic religions, the Quran doesn’t even acknowledge them) and when they defeat the Jews, they will all become Muslims -as they were all born Muslims- and then face judgment.

    Some decent non-violent people so desperately call themselves Muslims because of fear or upbringing, they would never hurt other people and they are, in essence, good people. But those are not real Muslims, those are the ones who want to twist every “divine” word to make it sound good. And yet, they, too, think it is outrageous that someone would insult and offend their religion. I think Muslims have a god complex and in our religion, even the most vile of Muslims is in the end a Muslim and for that will end up in heaven. Meaning, pious Muslims are considered top notch and then vile Muslims after them, and then everybody else. They are, in fact, very proud and self-adoring and think that they are superior for simply accepting the religion bestowed upon them.

    I have similar disdain for all religions, but Islam is the one I was raised learning and therefore is the one I know most about. I also think that, as Richard mentions here, other religions are socially evolving far more quickly than Islam is, especially when it comes to their youth. The majority of our youth is still quite socially regressive and aggressive.

    Sorry for the long reply. Thanks for the article.

    • Yasmine Sheaito on September 17, 2012 at 17:45

      Woops, sorry. I’m not a Muslim atheist, obviously, I’m an atheist who was raised Muslim and don’t follow any teachings of Islam. Just a clarification.

    • Richard Nikoley on September 17, 2012 at 17:50


      You humble me in more ways I can even describe.

      Bless you for that courage and may you be safe. Take care.

      Wow. Just wow.

    • Greg Swann on September 17, 2012 at 18:41

      I’m with Richard: Thanks for this. I cannot imagine living with that kind of oppressive oversight all the time.

  7. Marked Man on September 17, 2012 at 17:39

    0<-< <–prophet muhammad (taking a nap)

    Can't draw the guy but can name every other male after him.

  8. Rob K on September 17, 2012 at 19:32

    As a Christian, I take that nasty graphic as a compliment. The subtitle and Onion piece certainly seem to indicate that was the intent.

    • Richard Nikoley on September 17, 2012 at 19:36

      Rob K

      There you go. Peaceful evolved maturity. That’s the point.


  9. steve on September 17, 2012 at 19:33

    Catholic Atheist? Come on, please.
    What’s all this 9/11 talk. You gettin’ all 9/11 neo-con on us Richard?

    With your world-view, not only should you not give a shit about 9/11, but you should question it.

    • Richard Nikoley on September 17, 2012 at 19:40


      Yes, catholic atheist.

      How should I question 9/11? Are you one of those conspiracy nut jobs? I just had to unfriend a guy on my small FB personal I’ve known for 30 years. Just couldn’t take his silly conspiracy shit anymore, posting of photos of jet contrails, and so on.


      Things are typically just like they seem.

      • steve on September 17, 2012 at 19:47

        It’s just funny Rich.
        You the atheist anti-statist. And yet for you 9/11 is a holy event. It’s funny and ironic.
        Question it or not, YOU, should not give a shit about it. Its drama is only part of the statist stature.

        Catholic atheist is about as oxymoronic as it gets, unless we’re playing a game of semantics versus a small c or a large C.

      • Richard Nikoley on September 17, 2012 at 20:13

        In what way is 9/11 a holy event?

        I am forever sorrowful for the people who died and their families, not to mention all the businesses destroyed, many of which never recovered. The waste of attention and focus since has been enormous, though understandable on many levels.

        Not give a shit? No sir, not ever and it pains me to think anyone could have ever gotten that impression of me.

      • mark on September 18, 2012 at 06:31

        Do people still think this wasn’t a Demolition?? LOL

      • mark on September 18, 2012 at 07:07

        Its scary that they (US Gov’t) actually got away with it.

      • mark on September 18, 2012 at 07:25

        Use your Paleo instinct and search for real science and answers Richard. LOL

        After you/everyone watches this 60 video – come back and tell me there is no conspiracy. weak..

      • Richard Nikoley on September 18, 2012 at 07:28

        “After you/everyone watches this 60 video”

        Thanks, but I’ll stick to my general attitude about “conspiracies” of that scale: a secret that’s too big to keep.

      • mark on September 18, 2012 at 07:34

        thats what I thought. Cholesterol is bad for for too.

      • Richard Nikoley on September 18, 2012 at 07:50

        “Cholesterol is bad for for too.”

        I have never claimed that was a conspiracy and in fact, have argued as to why it’s not. Some people see conspiracy everywhere. I never actually see it anywhere. I see people acting for common interests, money and power/influence being chief among them.

        Who needs a “conspiracy” when you can openly pay researchers to scare people, advertise on media outlets so they’ll echo the stories and scare people, and make billions right out there in the open?

      • mark on September 18, 2012 at 07:54

        Fuck dude – I’m not asking you to give up Liver – just watch the video – then tell me with a “straight face” the 6 o’clock news the evening of 9/11 was correct

      • mark on September 18, 2012 at 07:56

        Maybe its my engineering background getting the best of me – silly brain.

      • Richard Nikoley on September 18, 2012 at 08:26


        I’m just not interested. Even if it were true, what then?

        Ever seen me link “Death by Government” about a million times? Hell, it was a slide in my AHS12 presentation.

        If you want to take a broad definition of conspiracy, then government, per se, is a conspiracy. I find no point in nit picking.

      • mark on September 18, 2012 at 09:22

        “I’m just not interested. Even if it were true, what then?”

        I don’t know, maybe the biggest public “fuck you citizens” I’ve ever witnessed

      • Richard Nikoley on September 18, 2012 at 10:12

        Maybe. But that’s a matter of perspective. I’ve been writing about the “fuck you citizens” by government for 20 years and it’s pretty damn cumulative.

      • mark on September 18, 2012 at 11:51

        You still haven’t watched the video huh? 😉 Trust me the icing is within your reach

      • Richard Nikoley on September 18, 2012 at 14:51

        mark, buddy. Give up, man. here, let me quote you from a couple of rounds up:

        “then tell me with a “straight face” the 6 o’clock news the evening of 9/11 was correct”

        You you have any idea how that made me laugh, and why?

      • mark on September 19, 2012 at 05:23

        “How should I question 9/11? Are you one of those conspiracy nut jobs?”

        “Things are typically just like they seem.”

        That’s it – just give up? You are confusing the hell out of me Mr. anarchist.

        Yes, the “3” towers were demolished. So it is “not” what it seems and no – I’m completely sane. Those who think a small fire can bring down 3 structural steel frame high rises at free fall speeds (That were built specifically to take a large plane impact) are nut jobs and need to wake up.

        Again, one liver eater to another – just watch the video – it won’t hurt I promise.

        Do most people reading this blog agree or disagree with me? I’m curious…

      • Richard Nikoley on September 19, 2012 at 07:30

        “Yes, the “3″ towers were demolished.”

        You get to believe whatever you like. I’m a fan of Ocamm’s Razor, however, and I saw fuel ladden B-757s hit those two towers. I saw the fuel burn. I also understand exactly why the 2nd tower to be hit collapsed before the first one to be hit.

        And it all makes perfect sense. I don’t need any conspiracy theory at all.

      • Paul C on September 19, 2012 at 13:55

        Occam’s Razor here too, Mark. Government can’t get simple things right, so why give one credit for such a complex plan.

        That you mentioned the design considered a plane impact but did not mention anything about an immense amount of combusting jet fuel is telling.

      • AndrewS on September 19, 2012 at 14:47

        To Richard and Paul, you cite Occam’s Razor but fail to mention your civil engineering degrees or any appreciable study of the conspiracists’ claims. Jet fuel doesn’t burn hot enough to melt steel, most of that fuel was consumed in the initial fireballs, the impacted floors had cooled enough for people to stand on them (!) within a few hours, and the copious black smoke is a sign of incomplete combustion — not something that happens at the temperatures required to melt steel. Yet there was considerable molten steel seen both pouring from the towers as well as in the debris. What you’ve both just said is “I know what fire is, and fire burns the hard stuff, so STFU.”

        To mark, the problem I see with the standard conspiracy-theory line is that you’re left with a claim that something like Congress and the white house cabinet instigated this crime, or some such. That’s just silly. Asking who benefits turns up some interesting suspects beyond “Bush did it so he could pass the Patriot Act”, which implies a degree of evilness that most people are unwilling to accept. I suggest separating out the suspiciousness of the collapses from a supposed perpetrator.

        I don’t know who was behind it. Claiming that one knows, as a fact, that it was 19 Muslims, is … not rational. But I don’t know that it was government, either. So what?

        Step 1: the idea that “burning jet fuel” took down those three structural-steel high-rises is suspicious.

        That’s all. I’m not worried about step 2 yet. I’d like to see people that enjoy using the word “rational” to describe themselves to actually be rational and not just throw around buzzwords.

      • mark on September 20, 2012 at 05:29

        The fuel burn…

        Let me summarize that the fuel BURNT in 10 seconds.. Here I will repeat this for the ignorant among us… 10 seconds. There were fucking people standing beside the fire!!
        So burning desks melted 6-10 inch think steel frames sitting vertical – all 50 of them. (youtube highrise fires) I mean for fuck sakes even if the floors collapsed – we would still see 500ft of the vertical steel structure STILL STANDING!!!! *bangs head of floor*

        I’ll I can say is the public/world was fucked from behind – and most people are still loving it.

        Conspiracy? – I am only stating that we witnessed 3 buildings get demolished – and the public was told, what? This is the only thing people need to know to maybe ask different questions.

      • Richard Nikoley on September 20, 2012 at 07:15

        ” Jet fuel doesn’t burn hot enough to melt steel”

        Please stop. You’re hurting my brain. It has never been claimed, nor is it any way necessary for the structural steel to melt.

      • mark on September 20, 2012 at 12:20


        It must really be hurting Richard. According to the offical report – all 3 buildings “collapsed” due to fire.

        Sane folks realize the steel structures should still be standing strong after desks and paper burned…

      • Richard Nikoley on September 20, 2012 at 17:59

        At the risk of wasting any more time, again, in no way did the structural steel melt. Go find a metallurgist, email him or her, and have him or her explain is. Ask why the second building to get hit collapsed first.

      • mark on September 21, 2012 at 04:48

        wow. .. k, so the “steel” structures didn’t melt – just blew up into pieces because of what – a few pices or drywall collasped on top of them? You need to quickly explain building #7 before my head explodes.

        If you would have watched that little video – there are hundreds of actual – what I would call “experts” regarding steel frame buildings – I’m sure you can call or google anyone of them as their names are listed, as well as some business names I believe.

        Here fuck – I’ll do it for you. I even looked up 5 of these companies – and there are real – no conspiracies about it.

        Here is the contact info of one name:

        I get it Richard – you might actually be scared with this one. It was horrific.

      • Richard Nikoley on September 21, 2012 at 06:35


        You presume I havent seen any of this stuff, in cludomg the stuff about the pentagon, and how the flight was shot down over PA in all these years.

        Same basic conspiracy formula people fall for over and over and over.

        I’ll leave you to it. Good luck with it.

      • Richard Nikoley on September 21, 2012 at 06:57

        “I get it Richard – you might actually be scared with this one. It was horrific.”

        Isn’t this the place where you’re supposed to link up that Nicholson bit from A Few Good Men?

      • mark on September 21, 2012 at 09:56

        I’m presuming you fail to see three staged demolitions. That’s it – No harm done. let’s not try to distract the readers from my point…

        If the government said they planned to demolish #7 I’m cool with that – it takes months of planning and work to demolish a building. Did they use this story? Was their a workorder signed weeks prior? a contract in place some demolition company can show us? Was there a public notice sent out? 😉

        No – they said fire did it…. fire, like a burning desk in a couple offices caused an entire steel frame building to “free-fall” just like a staged demolition…

        I’m telling you it is impossible – seriously, its impossible to take down these buildings by fire… I don’t no how else to say this other than in french…

        qu’il soit impossible de faire tomber ces bâtiments par le feu.

        Let’s compare fires: Look at the building at the bottom of this page: – the fucker didn’t even bend!

      • mark on September 21, 2012 at 09:57

      • Richard Nikoley on September 21, 2012 at 09:59

        “I’m presuming you fail to see three staged demolitions.”

        You’re presuming about everything possible.

        I’m not interested, mark, simple as that, and you’re free to judge that however you like.

      • The High Fat Hep C Diet on September 21, 2012 at 16:39

        The only conspiracy theorist I’m going to be bothered with is the person who can actually explain how it was done because they were part of the team that did it. Look how many of the Watergate burglars wrote books; that was a real conspiracy and everyone blabbed. There are detailed books about conspiracies like the Holocaust, MKULTRA, Big Tobacco, Big Pharma, and all sorts of robberies and frauds written by, or with the help of, Those Who Were There.
        Triple demolitions and remote controlled jetliners would need as many conspirators as a fake moon landing (hey! Maybe it was the same guys!).
        Human nature being what it is, thieves and killers fall out.
        Only imaginary conspirators and lone wolves keep secrets forever.

      • Richard Nikoley on September 21, 2012 at 18:58

        Big secrets too big to keep.

        Ocamm’s Razor.

        And I’ll never tell mark exactly how those buildings collapsed. It was obvious to me when I watched it happen. And I never thought steel melted. That would be idiotic..

      • mark on September 24, 2012 at 07:45

        Still waiting on the #7 explaination.

        Just give me a bone? A pointer?? Give me something that makes sense to you.

        Here is some math:

      • Richard Nikoley on September 24, 2012 at 09:56

        I don’t think you understand. I’m not interested. Judge that however you wish. I’m just not and your dissapointment about it doesn’t really bother me. Better things to do.

    • Barbara on September 18, 2012 at 06:25

      This is all such nonsense. Let me see: you are anti-Catholic because some Catholics choose to be bad Catholics? And there are many of them, even in your own family? Wow, just wow as Richard would say.

      I will put up Pope John Paul II or Mother Theresa, or St. Thomas Aquinas, or St. Francis of Assisi up against any bad Catholic you can produce.

      So let’s not have any more of this silliness. Just because someone does not practice a religion they say they believe in does not negate the religion.

      • mark on September 19, 2012 at 05:26

        You are awesome, just awesome! There isn’t one post you write that I cannot disagree with.

      • AndrewS on September 19, 2012 at 14:53

        mmm, dessert myths, yum!

    • Dainon on September 18, 2012 at 18:23

      Can you explain ‘abuse’ at the hands of the Sister, and at what age this happened? If it was being yelled at in front of the class, it seems strange to me for you to experience trauma for being told you screwed up, when you screwed up. Was this the common response to other students who did the same?

      For some background, I’m an atheist who went to a Catholic school where you actually got hit for screwing around. I don’t get a reactive panic attack when something hits the back of my hand. I also have no love for any religion (and certainly not one based on guilting people into submission), and am in no way defending Catholicism, but sometimes punishment is not a terrible thing.

      The guilt for being human/angels coming to attack you thing is rather scary, however.

    • anand srivastava on September 19, 2012 at 21:41

      ItsTheWoo: I guess you got a really bad mother. Instead of telling you that you do get punished for making mistakes in the real world. She tried to protect you from the punishment, and went to fight with your teacher. That is the worst thing to do. How will a child learn that world is NOT fair. I guess we can understand why you are like this. Why you cannot take any criticism.

      • mark on September 20, 2012 at 12:25


        I guess that punishment sounds reasonable to you?

        You aren’t a slave Muslim girl are you? – just wondering…

  10. steve on September 17, 2012 at 19:55

    the cocks all appear to be circumsized.
    what does this mean?

  11. Richard Nikoley on September 17, 2012 at 20:19


    You don’t get it.

    None of this is news. Everyone knows all this. And yet, people apologize over and over and walk on egg shells for what is largely somewhere between a 7 to 14th century, dirt scratching culture.

    Did you read the comment by the Egyptian, above? How about tell her it’s just a few radicals, nothing to see here, and move along.

    Go head. Hit reply to her comment and just tell her it’s all overblown, yada yada.

    • Richard Nikoley on September 18, 2012 at 06:21

      “You’re talking to a person living in a tribal dump warzone. You are NOT talking to an american who happens to be muslim.”

      I don’t know where you got the idea I was talking about anywhere else.

      The post wasn’t meant to be a thorough treatment of the subject anyway, just ironic, principally because of the image.

      If I was being thorough I would talk more about culture as the driving force, but with culture and religion in those parts of the world still very closely intertwined. If anything, Western and enlightenment evolution is a story about the every increasing separation of church (religion) and culture. Also, one of retaining the good stuff: the art, the music, some holiday traditions, community, etc.

      • Barbara on September 18, 2012 at 06:47

        We are all being incredibly naive here. Islam has always stated its purpose was to conquer the world and that is still the goal. The way they do it has changed but they are moving forward inch by inch, country by country and we’re fools if we can’t see it.

        How do we forget history so easily? We live in the now and are incredibly ignorant as well as naive. It’s all about faith. Up until very recently the lives of all men were informed by their beliefs. The world was Christian or pagan. All of life was seen through those filters. We simply must learn that nothing has changed for Islam.

      • Richard Nikoley on September 18, 2012 at 13:46

        “LOL islam wants to conqure the world…but catholicism never did.”

        Of course that’s false, on many levels, including both the catholic and the muslim history. The thing is The Enlightenment. Catholicism stuck arond and subordinated itself for a backseat and influence, Islam retreated to places no one really wanted to be anyway.

    • Yasmine Sheaito on September 18, 2012 at 17:50

      Actually, I’m not an Egyptian, I’m Lebanese (from Lebanon) but live in Egypt. In Lebanon, the majority are Muslim youth drink, have sex, interact with the opposite sex on a social level, etc. The point is that these laid-back awesome Muslims are not real Muslims.

      I’m not an idiot, Woo, I know how much society influences religion. What I’m talking about is actually in the Quran, a book that has maintain the same teachings for over 1300 years. How can a Muslim who is taught the same thing today as Muslims were taught 1300 years ago not be regressive?

      Moreover, you obviously don’t know what Islam teaches. Islam is an extreme self-righteous religion. For crying out loud, it’s the religion that decided upon itself that there will be no other religion after it. Muslims actually believe that even if we lived for billions of years from now, the teaching in this book will remain the same. This book teaches you that only Muslims go to heaven. It teaches you that Jews are the ultimate evil. It teaches you that women are inferior in their rights. It teaches you that you should not have sex or even touch another human being from the opposite sex if you are not married to them. This is why in place like Egypt, there’s a lot of gender segregation going on, not because of social traditions or whatnot, it’s because of Islam. 80 years ago, the Egyptian population was a much more laid-back society, most women did not wear headscarves, men and women interacted, people listened to music and danced and drank leisurely. This was because they were less concerned with Islam that in its core forbids all of this.

      American Muslims are not true Muslims. They are tolerant because they are mostly more educated and live in a less regressive society, not because they are Muslims. The Arab society just drives the normally extreme Muslim to MORE extreme measures.

      Do you know that in the teaching of Islam, a Christian living among the “Muslim Nation” has to pay a tax because they don’t serve in the expansion of the Muslim Nation but they receive protection from it? The message of Islam has always been to turn the whole world into an Islamic nation. Any Muslim who said that’s not an essence of the religion, that their religion is more tolerant, is kidding themselves. Muslims will let Christians and Jews live in the Muslim Nation, under Muslim laws, because 1) they are supposed to pay taxes, 2) they will eventually burn in eternal hell.

      These teachings are what the real pious Muslims want the world to be. I know smart young people who think this is fair. You know what they say? They say that “Islam is the only religion that will truly give Christians their rights.”

      I’m sorry to burst your bubble, but Islam, in its essence, is self-righteous and intends to make the entire world live under its “fair” religion. The average American Muslim or Arab Muslim who lives in Europe/US is just adopting their own version of Islam, not the one taught in the Quran.

      Also, I’d just like to point out that Egypt is not at all a “tribal dump warzone”, we have our version of dumb rednecks, but the majority of the urban Egyptian youth engage in art, culture, science, philosophy, etc. It’s just that their religion is keeping them from truly evolving on a social level. They still have a lot of repressed anger and sexual frustration that truly restricts their potential.

      “Give them a few mcdonalds and starbucks and video game systems and some walmarts to waste their money in, and they’d probably be all content placid and mellow like chubby america.”

      Darling, we have all of that here. People bash American politics and Jewish lack of morality and humanity over a bucket of KFC.

  12. Patrick Timpone on September 17, 2012 at 20:26

    I couldn’t agree more. Nobody should be president. That said, we’ve been doing a lot of work recently on learning about the office from Ed Rivera. Fascinating work. Keep up your blog I really have been enjoying it.

  13. marie on September 17, 2012 at 22:14

    Wooo, I’m still giggling over the buggy-eyed pics, brilliant! (sorry Greg, but then, I know you can take the ribbing).
    Here’s the thing, because of the extent, the “it’s extremists” idea doesn’t hold.
    But, it’s also not a necessary idea at all, if you’re trying to say that the religion of Islam is no worse than other religions, ie. that the atrocities can’t be assigned to the particular religion.
    Because in order to claim that it is not Islam itself that is Causing any of the atrocities, then you’ve already, I’m thinking, made at least one sufficient argument (excuse the paraphrasing) : the politics/war/misery/desperation , aka “social conditions”, poison the people and so also poison their religious observances, their religion.
    Evidence : horribly violent and self-opressive behaviors in the past by majorities in Other religions.
    Somehow, this history is being claimed as evidence that other religions are better than Islam, that is, that the others have evolved socially beyond this behavior Because of their ‘better’ religion.
    Now, if christians or jews, for example, had never done vile things on a grand scale, sure, they could at least try to make the argument that their religion itself is ‘better’ , but since they did go for several hundred years of violence and misery… ain’t the religion, it’s the times,. Why are ‘they’ (Muslim world) so far ‘behind’ the west? One possibility: the west made a hash of carving-up the middle east and northern India-Pakistan and the bloody pulp has festered.
    Yes, it was the west that was ‘advanced’ enough to dominate at that time…but how that can mean that their religion was better is an astounding bit of circular logic – I’m with you there.
    Basically, if a religion is a product of minds, then how it’s practiced at any given time in history is a result of the condition of those minds. Not the other way around …and that seems to be the only evidence we have (but I have an open mind…;)

    • Richard Nikoley on September 18, 2012 at 06:25

      “Somehow, this history is being claimed as evidence that other religions are better than Islam, that is, that the others have evolved socially beyond this behavior Because of their ‘better’ religion.”

      This is where culture enters the picture.

      In terms of reality vs. fantasy of course, all religions are basically the same.

      How they influence culture is the point. Over the past centuries, culture around the world have either advanced with notions and values of freedom, equality, productivity, industrialization, etc, such that religions have become weaker, relegated to the back seat. In this sense—the ability to drive culture—these other religions are “superior.”

      • marie on September 18, 2012 at 07:42

        Richard, thank God for the enlightenment ? 🙂
        I agree about the effect of culture, of course. I just don’t think that any particular religion has a Better effect on a culture than another. I think the more advanced cultures have advanced exactly because of their success in moving religion to the back seat. Exactly.

        After all, the west was still christian during the dark ages, as it is after the enlightenment and industrialization and the age of technology/information. Same religion, and one wouldn’t recognize it from the way it was practiced then to its predominant practices today.
        Not religion driving culture, the other way around. Religion, of Any stripe, appropriated, modified and used by the authorities of any time for power. We’re just steeped in centuries of Church telling us how influential christianity is – it’s the Church that’s influential, but not because of their particular religion, just because they controlled A religion. Religion is a powerful force and there’s where it’s power lies, in molding minds to accept authority, against logic and even against human nature at times.

      • Richard Nikoley on September 18, 2012 at 08:15

        “I just don’t think that any particular religion has a Better effect on a culture than another. I think the more advanced cultures have advanced exactly because of their success in moving religion to the back seat. Exactly.”

        Yes, I agree. I can see how that could be misconstrued by my quick rant. All religions are equally insane. It’s just that for some of them, other factors, mostly cultural in nature have moved religion to a subordinate position.

        “Not religion driving culture, the other way around.”

        Precisely. It’s a complete flip flop and now religion keeps up with culture so as to maintain some semblance of influence, and a healthier one. I don’t deny that the general fabric of a religious tradition is a reasonably decent way to adhere families and communities together and to instill children with a reasonable set of values.

        Of course, I prefer the cold reason/logic deal myself, but I get where for a lot of folks, it’s just easier to outsource the morality and ethics to the local church.

      • marie on September 18, 2012 at 08:34

        Richard, yes .

      • Greg Swann on September 18, 2012 at 10:10

        > It’s a complete flip flop and now religion keeps up with culture so as to maintain some semblance of influence, and a healthier one.

        All three of the churches of Abraham are attempted compromises with the pervasive influence of nascent Greek civilization in the Mediterranean — how you gonna keep ’em down on the farm? The problem is that the Greeks were so much better at being alive that the faiths either had to compromise more and more — as the Jews and the Christians did, over time — or you had to try to shut out the West entirely, as Islam has sought to do from the beginning, and as it has sought maniacally to do in the decades since Qutb. The Greeks always win these conflicts. Adults may be able to resist “temptation,” but children want and want and won’t be denied.

      • marie on September 20, 2012 at 20:34

        Greg, “…the Greeks were so much better at being alive…..” – I can’t help liking that statement 🙂
        And so, during ~400 hundred years of Ottoman rule the Local Greek culture was purposely suppressed…….except it didn’t work :
        “Little moon bright.
        shine on me tonight,
        that I may walk to school” ,
        a children’s nursery rhyme – note it’s not the sun that’s called upon, no, it’s the moon, because the indigenous Greeks taught their kids Greek language and Culture in secret schools in basements at night… that they identified with it……
        … that during the revolution, a Greek captain famously offers :
        – “let Ibrahim have lead shot with which to shoot us, rather than let him bring the marbles down!” – “the marbles” being the columns of the Acropolis, where the turks were holed-up, hacking them to get at the metal girders to melt into gun shot.
        So there perhaps is another measure of a civilization’s success: a whole people for whom it’s an identity.

    • Barbara on September 18, 2012 at 06:54

      Marie, you have fallen into the trap many do when discussing religion and history. When people commit evil no matter what religion they espouse, it’s the evil they do, NOT the religion they espouse that is to blame. Can you see the difference? I am a Catholic. I believe in Jesus Christ. But if I murder someone does that make Catholicism a bad religion? No, the action I did is evil. And I did it.

      We have to make these distinctions with Islam too. The Imams may be telling their followers to conquer the world. Are they leaving it to their followers as to how this is accomplished?

      • marie on September 18, 2012 at 07:13

        Barbara, I’m not following from your first to second paragraph, because what you describe in the first is exactly what I’m saying. It’s not any particular religion that accounts for the evil people do. However, I just didn’t stop there because by the Same token it’s also not any particular religion that accounts for the good people do. So one religion is not better than another. One culture of course can be ‘better’ than another.
        Yes, the cultures and religions are intertwined, one affecting the other, but all we see historically is that they go through an evolution, including some horrible time periods.. That part of the world is going through a ‘bad’ time now.

      • Barbara on September 18, 2012 at 10:59

        I was unclear Marie. I disagree. The only reason I would perform a good act when all my heart and mind was urging me to do evil would be my religion.

        We have a human nature than allows us to do good. But that will stop when our true personal happiness is at stake. In religion however I will do good against my own best interest for the purpose of pleasing God, or for the hope of Heaven.

        And religion does not evolve. Expressions of devotion may evolve but religions do not. And the bad times we are currently going through began when State sanctioned Atheism killed 40 million people in and after WWI, up to and including the 10 million killed in the Atheist regime of Pol Pot. Remember Stalin? Atheist. Remember Hitler? Atheist.

      • Richard Nikoley on September 18, 2012 at 11:15

        Oh my.

        “And religion does not evolve.”

        Nobody expects the Spanish Inquisition.

        “And the bad times we are currently going through began when State sanctioned Atheism killed 40 million people in and after WWI, up to and including the 10 million killed in the Atheist regime of Pol Pot. Remember Stalin? Atheist. Remember Hitler? Atheist.”

        Yea, that’s what it was all about. People praying, going to church, raising families.

        Had nothing to do with balance of geopolitical power and which political entity was going to rule it. Nothing like that.

        You might take note, Barabara, that we went to war with machinery and men in Korea, Vietnam, then engaged in cold war and buildup of thousands of nuclear weapons.

        Nobody with a brain cell sat around and preyed.

        We met their atheism with far better atheism, and we won.

      • Richard Nikoley on September 18, 2012 at 11:40

        “The only reason I would perform a good act when all my heart and mind was urging me to do evil would be my religion.”

        Why would your heart and mind urge you to evil? What else do you have left? Commandments?

        So, without some book of fairy tales and guys in robes and silly hats and figurines that sway from rear view mirrors, your heart and mind will urge you to do evil?

        You’re right. If that’s what it takes, keep your religion intact because we don’t really need any more evil. As for me and others who found a long time ago that we just don’t want to be evil, I believe we’ll do fine.

        Thanks for the naked admission by the way, that you can’t conceive of a human conscience that wishes no harm to others absent an oppressive dominating force indoctrinated from childhood with plenty of fear on the side so it’ll never be questioned.

      • mark on September 18, 2012 at 12:06

        Jesus Barbara…

        I don’t know where to start with this one.

        “The only reason I would perform a good act when all my heart and mind was urging me to do evil would be my religion.”

        You really have no historical grasp on religion – AT ALL! Religion only grew due to death, slaughter, lies, and brain washing – yet it controls your anger? I think you have “human nature” confused with “good and evil” “god/devil” “Day/Night”

      • Tracy on September 20, 2012 at 06:23

        So if religious people do bad things, it’s not because of their religion – it’s because they are bad people; but if non-religious people do bad things, it’s because they are non-religious?

        And *sigh* to the Hitler/atheist canard. His ‘state sanctioned atheism’ didn’t stop ‘Gott mitt uns’ from being displayed on belt buckles, flags etc, nor did it prevent support from christian organizations (and his support of them in turn), and so on and so forth.

        Doesn’t matter anyway – you seem to be implying that atheism has played a part in our ‘bad times’, which makes no sense. Lack of belief in a deity is not a causal factor; however, a generally good person who follows the biblical edict to take their rebellious sons to the city elders so ‘the men of the city shall stone him to death with stones’? Are they not following their religion, what their god commands?

        (And before you tell me Jesus came and fixed all that – no, he didn’t. He stated several times that he came to uphold and fulfill OT law, not abolish it.)

        I am glad though that you do believe, since (as you said) it’s the only thing restraining you from doing ‘evil’ when/if you have the urge.

    • Greg Swann on September 18, 2012 at 12:31

      > sorry Greg, but then, I know you can take the ribbing

      We care a lot. I’m in their heads forever, which is the point of the exercise.

      FWIW, I’m really enjoying this series of videos. There are ten of them now, plus some other things I’ve done, all at the YouTube channel. If people are looking for something to make fun of (to fend of memetic contagion?), my very clumsy guitar playing stands out the most, I think. But I love the intimacy and the vocal variety and the expressiveness of my face. I like the thought of interacting with some stranger in some government- or god-benighted corner of the globe, talking in a perfect privacy about the most scandalous, most blasphemous, most treasonous ideas and saying, “Yes! Yes, damnit! You have every right to think this way.” I’m changing the world in the only way it can be changed, one mind at a time, and having a blast doing it. If my personal style amuses, so much the better: I’m in their heads forever.

  14. mark on September 18, 2012 at 12:46

    ” But one thing that Jesus said that resolates is “Love Thy Neighbour as Thyself.”

    But then…

  15. Longtime Reader on September 18, 2012 at 00:57

    LOL I just realized you linked to three separate pics.

    Yes, that is Greg Swan to me also.

  16. Dr. Curmudgeon Gee on September 18, 2012 at 01:59

    methink Islam still remains mostly a fundamentalist religion, cause it didn’t go through as many schism as Christianities. also it didn’t become tamed by enlightenment/ so
    most Islamic countries are still theocracy.

    the bible (OT + NT) is a sorry piece of patch work (redacted by many hands over longer times, many languages)

    Quran is more consistent since it was written largely by one man’s “vision”.

    Quran to muslims is like Yeshua to X-tains. both are non-negotiable, deified.

    although i do know a few good people who are muslims. but they’re still easily offended.


    • mark on September 21, 2012 at 06:13

      “Quran to muslims is like Yeshua to X-tains. both are non-negotiable, deified. ”

      I agree – but they will pussy-foot around what it says…

      From the Qur’an:

      1. “Infidels are your sworn enemies,” (Sura 4 Verse 101).
      2. “Make war on the infidels around you,”(Sura 9 Verse 123 and Sura 66 Verse 9).
      3. “Be ruthless to the infidels,” (Sura 48 Verse 29).
      4. “Fight those who believe not Allah nor the Last Day,”(Sura 9 Verse 29).
      5. “Strike off the heads of infidels in battle,” (Sura 47 Verse 4).
      6. “If someone stops believing in Allah, kill him,”(al-Bukhari 9.84.57).
      7. “Take neither the Jews nor the Christians for your friends,”(Sura 5 Verse 61 and Sura 60 Verse 13).
      8. “Never be a helper to the disbeliever,”(Sura 28 Verse 26).
      9. “Kill the disbeliever wherever you find them,”(Sura 2 Verse 191).
      10. “The unbelievers are the worst beasts in the eyes of Allah,” (Sura 8 Verse 55).
      11. “Jews are apes and swine,”(Sura 2 Verse 65).
      12. “Fight and kill the disbelievers wherever you find them, take them captive, harass them, lie in wait and ambush them using every stratagem of war.” Qur’an:9:5
      13. “Fight them until all opposition ends and all submit to Allah.” Qur’an:8:39
      14. “So fight them until there is no more Fitnah (disbelief [non-Muslims]) and all submit to the religion of Allah alone (in the whole world).” Qur’an:8:39
      15. “Fight the unbelievers around you, and let them find harshness in you.” Qur’an:9:123
      16. “I shall terrorize the infidels. So wound their bodies and incapacitate them because they oppose Allah and His Apostle.” Qur’an:8:12
      17. “Believers, obey Allah, and obey the Messenger. Do not falter; become faint-hearted, or weak-kneed, crying for peace.” Qur’an 47:33
      18. “Do you think you will get away before Allah knows who among you have striven hard and fought?” Qur’an 9:16

      • marie on September 21, 2012 at 14:51

        mark, that’s great….as an example of how powerfully violent a religion can be. Now could you help me out here? Quote the passages that are in the same vein from Leviticus, Exodus etc. and even the New Testament. All the abrahamic religions have this murderous side. What is actually practiced and followed seems to be wholly a product of other cultural forces, “the times”, not the particular religion. See above to Dr.Gee too.

      • marie on September 21, 2012 at 14:53

        heh, nesting surprised me again ! : “see below”, not above.

    • marie on September 21, 2012 at 14:43

      “most Islamic countries are Still theocracy” (emphasis mine).
      Dr. C G,
      until 40 years ago. Beirut was known as the Paris of the east, while 50 years ago Cairo, Alexandria and even Tehran were Still world-reknown centers of learning, the latter following along the ~1000 year-old Persian tradition of scholarship, science and poetry-philosophy.
      What’s happened to that part of the world in the last century is horrible, purely political and typical for dictatorships. That they largely fell to Theocratic dictatorships rather than strictly military ones just puts them among the majority of dictatorships historically, with the attendant atrocities. A purely military dictatorship just doesn’t have the same oomph.
      It’s not a function of their particular religion, just a result of the dark side of any religion (christianity as well….the religions are as you say all related).
      Nothing like fanning the flames of (any) fundamentalism to raise the violent support of a minority so as to subdue the majority. Then give it just 1 generation of imposed semi-literacy and poverty and dictators (from ayatollahs to princes and terrorists) can shift those numbers even more to their favor, all the while pointing away from the internal problems to the damn foreign threat (as dictators do everywhere else in the world, from the far east to europe and north and south).
      I won’t get into how we in the enlightened west supported and even in some cases wholly installed some of these Anachronistic regimes in the last century, because we’re only speaking of the culture and religion here – which is not what is projected by the loud screeching monkeys.
      It’s just that I think the sad mess should be an object lesson to the people of western countries, it should not be assigned to a particular religion so that we feel “it can’t happen to us”.
      That there is the beginning of dehumanizing the enemy.
      It did happen to us in the past – dark ages, crusades, holy inquisition, witch burnings, public tortures in the village square…oh, wait, the latter was still happening in western and central Europe 150 years.
      Now, given how quickly it happened to an Islamic part of the world in Modern times, to me it seems that it should be telling us that if we aren’t vigilant in keeping religion not back-burner here, then can it happen here Again as well. Meanwhile, look to the geopolitics that made the mess as the only way to fix it.
      The particular religion is a red herring.

      • marie on September 21, 2012 at 14:46

        correction : “….keeping religion On the back-burner here “.

      • Richard Nikoley on September 21, 2012 at 18:39

        Marie, cherie.

        The essential problem is that they did not go through a philosophical Enlightenment that replaced religious principles with more rational ones that put religion to the backseat for good. It’s really that simple.

        And yes, in the early 80s I knew a number of Iranian students who knew more about the Paris of the Middle East (Tehran) and the one and only Paris than I. The former, in 1982 or so, was still fresh I’m their memories. I’m glad they got out before it became a shot hole.

      • marie on September 21, 2012 at 19:50

        Mais oui Richard, I think we essentially agree on this, especially after you clarified some more in comment a couple of days ago.
        I fully agree that the Enlightenment has been critical to our current civilization (as have the other major cultural forces, Industrialization and Technology/Information) and I was making the point that the state of the west has nothing to do with our religion being any better than any other.
        Where I differ with you is the optimism : I’m not at all sure religion is in the backseat “for good” , there seems to be a lot going on to stir it up periodically for political gain, and sometimes successfully, eg. the “Protestant” vs. “Catholic” Troubles in Ireland just 35 years ago.
        I do not want to see any other Belfasts ca.1970’s, any more than seeing the bombed-out Beirut or shuttered Tehran.
        Religious fundamentalism of any stripe is a powerful force – the fact that the most active nut-jobs right now are Muslims is a function of their fundamentalism (fanned by very powerful geopolitics), not a function of their Islam.
        So I do not think we are immune, Enlightenment or no, especially since we haven’t been immune even quite recently.

      • marie on September 21, 2012 at 20:49

        In fact, you could easily say that “Eastern”, Islamic civilization experienced their Enlightenment hundreds of years before ours, and yet they went through several cycles after that and here they are lately subjugated to anachronistic theocratic dictatorships in ‘the blink of an eye’ (it took 50-60 years or so).

        From a medieval muslim (sufi) cleric, philosopher/poet and jurist (and similar ideas were wide-spread at that time) :

        “Only Breath”

        “Not Christian or Jew or Muslim, not Hindu
        Buddhist, sufi, or zen. Not any religion
        or cultural system. I am not from the East
        or the West, not out of the ocean or up
        from the ground, …..
        —-did not descend from Adam and Eve or any
        origin story.
        My place is placeless, a trace
        of the traceless. Neither body or soul.
        I belong to the beloved, have seen the two
        worlds as one and that one call to and know,
        first, last, outer, inner, only that
        breath breathing Human Being.

        From “Essential Rumi”
        by Coleman Barks

        Enlightened Humanism if ever I’ve seen it.
        And yet….it clearly can be followed by cycles of backwards religiosity.

      • Richard Nikoley on September 21, 2012 at 21:09

        There is only one crucial aspect of the Enlightenment of the west, and that was to, in principle, subjugate both religion and state to the individual in some important respects.

        It’s the only hang nail we have left.

      • marie on September 21, 2012 at 21:22

        Agreed. Here’s to hoping that nail’s made of titanium.

      • Dr. Curmudgon Gee on September 21, 2012 at 23:29

        Marie & Mark,

        i do think religions in the West are “better.”

        (“better” not in the sense of ethical codes or more “enlightened”)

        they are “better” cause the theology is confusing & convoluted (e.g., trinity, never understood it) due to early schism. saved by faith? saved by grace? once saved always saved? can one fall off the boat?

        while Islam always seems more cohesive to me.

        but then Quran is quite repetitive & boring to me so i never finished it.


      • marie on September 21, 2012 at 23:53

        Ah, better for being less effective.
        Could be….if the re legions of the ‘west’ hadn’t been so effective in the past. ( adubious distinction anyway, since the longest-lived empire ever was Byzantium, an Eastern Christian Orthodox empire.
        All three religions ‘of the book’ contain mind-boggling contradictions, pushing love on one hand and murder and conquest on the other. Which side is in ascendancy in which religion at any given time seems entirely subject to other cultural/political forces. Or so it seems to my admittedly rather long view 🙂

      • Dr. Curmudgon Gee on September 26, 2012 at 14:08

        “judge the tree by the fruits”

        so i don’t care which religion east or west has more enlightened doctrines.

        the “fruits” of the western religions in the west are less damaging (for now).


  17. rob on September 18, 2012 at 04:39

    I wish we could just treat the Middle East as the world’s biggest gas station and otherwise just leave them to their own devices, their only real asset is gradually being depleted and when the oil runs out or demand wanes they’ll be left with nothing but sand and Mosques.

    They are the only people that South Park can’t make fun of.

    And here’s tap-dancing Jesus

    • Barbara on September 18, 2012 at 07:05

      Well, I don’t see anyone else stating how offensive this insulting of Our Lord Jesus is so I will: I find this to be the extreme insult. How dare you insult the God who created you? This kind of thing is not to be tolerated because it not only insults Him but 6 billion of your fellow men and women.

      How can this be happening? We laugh and scoff at a bunch of silly Moslems because they get their knickers in a twist when their false god is insulted. Yet the thousands of Christians who read this blog (and I know there are many many many out there – you’re not all so called atheists!! No one speaks up!

      So here I am. Yes, I don’t have to read this blog. I read it for the nutrition info. and recipes, and for the sometimes interesting discussion. But I will not tolerate these insults.

      • Richard Nikoley on September 18, 2012 at 07:22

        “So here I am. Yes, I don’t have to read this blog. I read it for the nutrition info. and recipes, and for the sometimes interesting discussion. But I will not tolerate these insults.”

        And this is precisely the sort of attitude a peaceful CULTURE cultures. And it’s not “tolerance” either. Barbara has absolutely no obligation to tolerate me or this blog in any way. She just doesn’t get to stir up a mob to come and stop me by force.

        See? Simple.

      • Barbara on September 18, 2012 at 08:43

        You are right, Richard. But I would not stir up a mob to come and stop you by force because I believe in the sanctity of life and would not deprive you of yours.

        Have we forgotten also the meaning of the word “tolerate?” When we allow others to hold beliefs, or to perform actions which we disagree with WITHOUT FORCING THEM TO STOP we are tolerating their belief or action.

        This is a far cry from agreeing with their belief or action. And it is an even further cry from turning their beliefs and actions from bad to good. So please can we have some accuracy in language? It’s real hard to have a discussion when we have not even agreed on what words really mean.

      • Richard Nikoley on September 18, 2012 at 09:48

        Alright, I can spot you “tolerate” in a social context. But I prefer “minding one’s own business.” I like what it connotes.

      • Barbara on September 18, 2012 at 11:13

        That’s one point of view Richard but in our world there is a great deal that will become our business real quick.

        If you were a European, say living in Paris, and there were several areas in your own city where even police will not uphold the law, would you not think that was everyone’s business? Isn’t rule of law fundamental to society?

        It’s cool to “tolerate” Moslems when they start to take over cities – in my own nearest large city of Toronto for example where they are pushing for Sharia law the more liberal element fall all over each other to think this would be a good thing – we’re told we must respect their culture blah blah blah. But are we so tolerant that we’ll be swamped before we know it? I’m not sure where I’m going with this but where does it start to become our business?

      • Richard Nikoley on September 18, 2012 at 11:32

        “Isn’t rule of law fundamental to society?”

        Oh, thanks for stating a premise. Unfortunately, you didn’t stop to think I would not simply accept it.

        I don’t, not by a long shot.

        Human beings are social animals and as such conscience, self reflection, values, trade, love and such are fundamental to society.

        The rule of law is mere domination over all of the foregoing. It’s a Neolithic evil.

      • Tracy on September 20, 2012 at 07:23

        Barbara – I’m in Toronto! Quick question… were you ever a member of a Cdn. writer’s association? You remind me of someone (a very nice someone, whom I liked) I used to chat with when I was a member, years ago.

      • Jscott on September 28, 2012 at 17:03

        Tolerate–A passive aggressive wink by arrogant old school power holders that have not yet gotten the memo: “We ain’t gonna take this anymore and you can’t shut us up.”

        In days gone by you would just split tribes and find new land. Now days those that “tolerate” others suffer from stress induced heart attacks, resentment, and a constant need to argue for their spot in the world.

        Shrugging and saying “none of my business” is a better method. It also allows you to eat at more tables.

      • rob on September 18, 2012 at 07:25

        What do you find insulting about Jesus tap dancing on a cracker?

      • Barbara on September 18, 2012 at 08:57

        Oh please! Is that the best you can do? Am I supposed to engage you in an argument about this? Like what kind of insult would be tolerable? That would be to follow Obama’s old pal Alinsky, no? Instead of me cutting off your head for insulting Jesus, you would tie me up in knots with arguing about what kind of insult would be ok….sorry pally, I may be a Catholic but I’m not stupid.

      • rob on September 18, 2012 at 09:31

        I don’t think anyone has called you stupid, I’m just trying to understand why you think that image is insulting. Tap dancing is a perfectly innocent, wholesome activity, Jesus is well-dressed, well-groomed and quite handsome in the image, how can it be interpreted as profane or sacrilegious?

      • mark on September 18, 2012 at 09:26

        Religion is insulting….. period.

        I like how you say your god is real but the Muslim is false LMFAO. They both actually stem from the same damn bullshit story from Sun and moon worship thousands of years ago….

      • Richard Nikoley on September 18, 2012 at 10:18


        While this is all true, this post is about giving the other major religions props for putting it the proper context as concerns violence.

        Barbara is not condoning violence on anyone for defiling or blaspheming her god and by damn, I’m going to celebrate that here, this time.

        Salute to Barbara. She is actually setting the best example. See?

      • mark on September 18, 2012 at 11:15

        I’ll give Barbara a cookie for not slitting our throats.

        But this…
        “We laugh and scoff at a bunch of silly Moslems because they get their knickers in a twist when their false god is insulted.”

        is what I jumped on – the fact that the Christian God is real and better and the rest are pretend.. What are we – 6 years old? Yes Alah was made up by a *ducks for cover* Narcisstic Pedophile named Mohammad (who was also made-up I’m pretty sure), but so was God/Jesus “made-up” just the same. Sad – because the proof is everywhere.

      • Barbara on September 18, 2012 at 11:20

        Rob, let me explain. I guess it would help you understand if I called your mother a slut, or went around on every blog I could post on and said I had solid proof your sister sold sex on every street corner and that your father was a pervert who spend most of his evenings in porn movie houses jerking off into a handkerchief.

        Now they may be activities that your family actually do participate in. However, if you would find them insulting to your dear family, would it make you feel better if I said that your mother was a very nice slut? And that your sister worked out of a really high class bordello? Or that your father wiggled his willie into a monogrammed linen doily?

      • Barbara on September 18, 2012 at 11:22

        mark, too bad this is not the place because we could have a terrific discussion and we could exchange information. Let me say that if you look you’ll find. And I don’t mean that in a dismissive way, honestly.

      • Richard Nikoley on September 18, 2012 at 11:48


        Yea, that’s actually a bit surprising to me coming from a catholic, a tradition I have grown to have some respect for, observing my wife’s family. I totally expect it from a fundamentalist baptists where every other religion is, literally, a cult. I’m serious. Catholics are a cult, to them.

        They actually say that with a straight face.

        But fundamentalist Christians are the most moronic of all faiths I know of, save fundamentalist Muslims.

      • rob on September 18, 2012 at 12:10

        I don’t see how a graphic of someone tap dancing is equivalent to calling a person a slut or a pervert, to me that is totally irrational.

        Is there something about tap dancing that I am unaware about? Does it have a sordid history?

      • mark on September 18, 2012 at 12:17

        apprarently we are neighbors – I’m in Whitby. Come over for tea – and in 20 minutes I’ll have you seeing life for the first time.

      • mark on September 18, 2012 at 12:18

        I did look – what the fuck am I missing? And yes – this is the perfect place, even Richard agrees

      • rob on September 18, 2012 at 13:20

        I think what happened there is that Barbara was insulted by the image Richard posted, not by the one I linked to, which is quite innocuous, but she didn’t want to accuse Richard of insulting Jesus so she accused me instead.

  18. Trish on September 18, 2012 at 04:40

    “God is the leading cause of death.” Christopher Hitchens

    • Barbara on September 18, 2012 at 08:45

      I get a little sick of people quoting the late Christopher Hitchens as if he is the Man. From what I’ve read he was not a very nice man at that, even estranged from his children. Let me see, that must mean that atheists are bad fathers, no?

      And being born is the cause of death. And I guess since God is the cause of us being born, you could say He is the cause of death all right.

  19. mark on September 18, 2012 at 06:19

    Keep you eyes on this site: and his original site:

    Amen Richard…

    They are temporaily down unfortunately, (I wonder if its related to these current events?) but this ex-muslim has single-handedly shown the true colors of the Muslim religion through debate and various means…

    Religion needs to die a fast death if we are to move on – and here is the best site that proves its all Bullshit:

    • Barbara on September 18, 2012 at 08:47

      People who hate religion for whatever reason have been trying to kill it for about 4 thousand years. Good going, guys.

      • mark on September 18, 2012 at 09:30

        Really – that’s all you got? No real debate I can sink my teeth into?

      • Barbara on September 18, 2012 at 11:25

        No, mark, because you know darned well that this is not the place. I’ve got so much that you could sink your teeth into and I’d love to share but I guess it won’t be here. Good luck to ya.

      • mark on September 18, 2012 at 12:24

        typical response when you have fuck all…

      • mark on September 18, 2012 at 09:42

        Religion (the fairy tale stuff) goes back 6-8 thousand years at least – 20 thousand years or so if you include the early Zodiac stuff. Remember, Christianity just ripped off and copied the early stories and made their version – and now spew their plagiarised BS wearing big hats and robes.

        I won’t bore you with the details, but if you want to “wake-the-fuck-up” click on my links and read.

      • Richard Nikoley on September 18, 2012 at 09:52


        Religion is dying on a global scale. One could view the Islamic push back as a logical geopolitical reaction.

        But it will die, eventually and the Internet is accelerating that by leaps and bounds.

        I recall back when web pages got up and running, around ’94 or so and lots of people were up in arms about the ‘neo-nazis’ putting up a bunch of websites. I looked at a few, laughed, and declared that it was the best thing that could have happened.

        Shine a light on delusions and lunacy. Let them speak.

      • Barbara on September 18, 2012 at 11:32

        Sorry to disagree, Richard, and I know this is not the place for long drawn out discussion especially about religion, but faith is not dying. You seem to be a thoughtful guy and are not averse to reading history – I can heartily recommend Warren H Carroll’s History of the Catholic Church series. Five books in all – wonderfully detailed and he examines much of what was happening in the world at large too – I can’t recommend them highly enough.

        It seems to me that many times we are talking at cross purposes. You have had a bad experience in religion in your youth and got away from it as quickly as you could. I did the same thing and did not practice my faith for 30 years. But faith in general is in us inherently. Some of us just “leave” it.

        However when I returned to my Catholic faith in my 50s I found (smile) that something and changed – and guess what? It was not the Catholic Church.

        Anyway, I appreciate that we must let this go for now. And I appreciate that you have “tolerated” me!!!!

      • mark on September 18, 2012 at 12:29

        “However when I returned to my Catholic faith in my 50s I found (smile) that something and changed – and guess what? It was not the Catholic Church.”

        No it wasn’t – it was you getting old – Yes – you are searching for the meaning of life as it races by…. People want to make sense of the “unknown” before the end. Simple human nature…

      • Richard Nikoley on September 18, 2012 at 14:02

        “but faith is not dying”

        Well, it’s not to you, because you for whatever reason after 30 years decided to reinstate yours. Fine. Perhaps you’re at a comfortable spot in life where you can afford the indulgence of prayer when action is called for. Perhaps if you had kids, they’re out of the house and you take pleasure in the frivolity of faith when before, you may not have allowed yourself such indulgences when life for your children was on the line.

        But the idea of faith and formal religion, in general, has been in global decline for centuries and that’s an a-priori statement of fact: one need not even get off the couch to know it’s true.

        Be careful of projecting what’s true for you onto society, culture, the world at large. I don’t like to see you fooling yourself.

        But I do wish you well and am content that you have the luxury to bask in faith.

    • mark on September 19, 2012 at 07:57

      This one is up now. No better place to actually understand the thought process of true Muslim belief…

  20. mark on September 18, 2012 at 06:21

    I forgot – here is a great Thread about Islam:

  21. Barbara on September 18, 2012 at 07:00

    Hey, you wanna talk war numbers? 100 million babies killed in the womb yearly and that’s a minimum as a sacrifice to the “choice” goddess. We just have different motives, different means, different words, different beliefs, but our secular, nay atheist (Godless) masters and mistresses wage the same old wars.

    Are would Richard or anyone call this a “war of civilization?” There’s a saying that says we can tell how civil we are by how we treat our animals. Mother Theresa changed that slightly by saying you can judge a society by how it treats its children. Civilization anyone?

    • LCForevah on September 18, 2012 at 09:53

      What choices women make with their bodies are absolutely none of your business. Choice has been politicized when it has always been a private decision. Calling a mass of cells a child is sheer nonsense and does not make those who do it good people. It is cheap grace and lazy morality.Controlling choice would involve control of human beings’ sex lives, which in the end, is really unfeasible.

      As a recovering roman catholic, an atheist who understands that I will always be culturally catholic, I find Mother Theresa to be ” a fraud, a fanatic, and a fundamentalist.” All the things conventional wisdom considers MT to be are complete fabrications. The quote is from Christopher Hitchens’ documentary on MT. He also wrote “The Missionary Position” meticulously documenting MT’s frauds. What she did in San Francisco to people dying of AIDS was unconscionable.

      Above is part one of three parts documenting MT’s despicable behavior.

      • Barbara on September 18, 2012 at 11:05

        So find me a scientist or doctor who can examine that bunch of cells in the mother’s womb and tell me what kind of creature they are.

        And because we are slowly aborting ourselves in oblivion with fewer and fewer workers to do what needs to be done you “choice” fanatics are shooting yourselves in the foot.

        As for poor Mother Theresa being a fraud, that is pretty small. Find me another person who did what she did and than we’ll talk. Quoting Hitchens is also as lame as it gets – who the hell was he anyway but a nasty wannabe journalist?

        And you don’t get to be “culturally Catholic.” That’s MY culture. YOU have chosen to be an atheist. So get off my patch.

      • Greg Swann on September 18, 2012 at 13:03

        > Greg Swann has the best an only valid argument counter abortion: you have to live with yourself. Can you? Are you going to celebrate that act? Are you going to adore yourself over it?

        I was half-disappointed that the big-O Objectivists at the 21 Convention did not attend to me. My assumption is that they simply had no idea who I am, although it’s plausible that Diana Hsieh or someone has spread the word about me. But I was only half-disappointed because, as we both know from days of yore, some big-O Objectivists can get ugly when they’re cornered. This is not a criticism of the specific individuals there. Eric Daniels seemed like a sweet guy, and Yaron Brook was quite a bit less of a True Believer than I was expecting. Even so, I was happy to do my stuff unmolested.

        But my argument about abortion is something the big-O Objectivists need to address:

        Politically, as a matter of human liberty, other people’s families — or pets or property — are none of my damn business. But having an abortion, performing one, encouraging one or paying for it are all morally-reprehensible acts. They cannot advance or enhance your own self-adoration, and, necessarily, they must retard and diminish your self-love, in the immediate moment and enduringly thereafter. It is not even necessary to look for real-life evidence of this argument, but, of course, that evidence abounds.

        Do you want to dispute this? If one abortion enhances your self-love a little, will six abortions cause you to love your self a whole lot more? How about strangling kittens? Whether you like it or not, seeing your self committing atrocities is abhorrent to your mind, and no amount of rationalizing self-destructive behavior will turn vices into virtues.

        You could argue that abortion or exposure can be exigently necessary — as, for instance, in extreme emergencies or when your family is already starving to death. But even then, the action cannot make you love your self more and must make you love your self less. Again, existentially, in real life, there are no counter-examples. Too much the contrary.

        By considering the issue solely as a matter of politics, Objectivism (and the entire pro-abortion movement) misses the real news, which is always the self. The rest of the world deliberately overlooks the obvious fact that every purposive human action is taken first and most fundamentally by the self upon the self, but Objectivism is a putatively egoistic philosophy. Papering over the uncontroverted anegoistic consequences of abortion — in order to make a political sacrament of a personal atrocity — is unacceptable.

      • Richard Nikoley on September 18, 2012 at 11:24

        “So find me a scientist or doctor who can examine that bunch of cells in the mother’s womb and tell me what kind of creature they are.”

        What kind of creature is a uterus? How about a placenta? How about when it doesn’t become fertilized and gets self aborted? How about when it is fertilized and god aborts it (god is the chief abortionist ever)?

        Greg Swann has the best an only valid argument counter abortion: you have to live with yourself. Can you? Are you going to celebrate that act? Are you going to adore yourself over it?

        Everything else is living for others or the ideals of others or for silly childish lies and admonitions you were taught.

        Mother Teresa was the world’s chief champion of squalor and remaining in squalor–as a virtue–to ever live. That’s why she was evil.

      • LCForevah on September 18, 2012 at 14:36


        Not one statement you have made addresses the needs and self-respect of the 50 some million women in this country who have chosen abortion. You made it all up and you are not a woman. A mass of cells is just that, a mass of cells. You represent the other side of Barbara’s coin which is to declare that either one of you has any moral say.

        “Uncontroverted anegoistic consequences”

        Really. Get. Over. Yourself.

      • Richard Nikoley on September 18, 2012 at 15:12

        I used to “righteously” argue about a woman’s right to choose.

        One day, long ago, it was during the whole Terri Schiavo deal way back, Greg did a post on his blog with a simple message: “if you want her dead, then kill her yourself.”

        I never forgot that.

        I accept that aborting an embryo, fetus, baby (I don’t get into the semantics) is any woman’s right to do. But then, so is it my right to go get a gun and blow my brains out. …. or drink or drug myself to death.

      • Richard Nikoley on September 18, 2012 at 15:15


        That’s actually what I usually say. I’m a guy and it’s none of my business, because I don’t want to get into it.

        But what Greg says is simply there for any woman to consider or not, right? What if some see it any say yea, you, know, I really have regretted that all my life. I’ve known women who feel that way. Haven’t you?

        This is not about preventing them through legal mean or any other.

      • Greg Swann on September 18, 2012 at 22:03

        > Really. Get. Over. Yourself.

        Do you have an argument? I have seen emotional displays before.

        I have zero doubts that the argument I summarized here is cogent and correct. It was a side issue in the writing of Man Alive!, something I did in response to a question that came up in email. The math of the matter is very simple in the context of the calculus of values addressed in Chapter 7. There simply are no counter-examples, no one of either sex who says, “By golly, my love for my self has never been greater than it is since I got into killing kids. Mass of cells, my ass! They’re a mass of fun!” Does not happen. When you insist that something must be so and yet you cannot produce an instance of that phenomenon, you are making a specious claim — that is, a religious claim.

      • Greg Swann on September 18, 2012 at 22:15

        More from me in video on abortion and self-adoration:

      • Greg Swann on September 18, 2012 at 22:24

        Oops. Doesn’t like the embed:

      • LCForevah on September 19, 2012 at 03:58

        Nothing you say is correct. It is all made up in your own head.

        Once again, no uterus, no opinion.

        Richard, to each their own experience–every woman I know who had an abortion has no regrets. Old, or recent.

      • Greg Swann on September 19, 2012 at 09:23

        > Once again, no uterus, no opinion.

        That kind of resort does cannot work without a gun — and it will never work on me. Thugs are dealt with in chapters 10 and 11 of Man Alive!

      • Tracy on September 20, 2012 at 06:47

        In the US, there are about 6 million pregnancies a year. Just under 2 million of those do not result in a live birth.

        About 1.2 million pregnancies are aborted, for whatever reason. The remaining 1.8 million are due to miscarriage, stillbirth, and ectopic or molar pregnancies. Looks to me, then, that god kills more babies than abortion? Someone should tell him to cut it out, because we need more workers.

        Mother Teresa has been criticized by more than Hitchens (rebut his arguments, rather than rebuke his character, BTW). Members of her order, along with various medical associations and investigative journalists, criticized her view of suffering as ‘bringing people closer to Jesus’ and, as such, not administering any sort of pain medication or really adhering to any standard of medical care. She had millions in donations, which were not used to increase standards of care (in her orphanages or hospices). She, of course, was fine with receiving a pacemaker and heart surgery at the hands of modern medicine.

        Finally – atheism, which is simply lack of belief in a god or gods, is not a choice. How can you decide to believe in something or not? You either do or you don’t. I was raised catholic, and realized I didn’t believe what I was being taught. Further investigation did nothing to convince me. I simply didn’t believe – I didn’t decide to just stop believing one day. I imagine you didn’t wake up one day and decide to be Catholic.

      • Tracy on September 20, 2012 at 06:51

        There are women for whom an abortion neither leads them to love themselves more, nor love themselves less. Just saying. Not all women judge themselves for it.

      • Tracy on September 20, 2012 at 06:52

        Sorry – nesting isn’t working. I was responding to specific comments, but they all floated to the bottom! Argh.

      • Greg Swann on September 20, 2012 at 09:23

        > There are women for whom an abortion neither leads them to love themselves more, nor love themselves less.

        If it helps, substitute “strangling kittens” for “abortion.” Completely pellucid, yes?

        Note also that I am talking about everyone, male or female, who is instrumentally involved in an abortion.

        Every purposive human action is taken first and most fundamentally by the self upon the self, and, as a matter of causal necessity, each one of those actions results in a net incremental increase or decrease in current and future self-adoration. You cannot see your self behaving badly and love your self more thereafter in consequence.

        This is the essence of the self as the sine qua non attribute of the uniquely-human life: Choices have consequences, and those consequences cannot be evaded or avoided, regardless of what anyone says.

      • Richard Nikoley on September 20, 2012 at 09:32

        In terms of my own experience surrounding an abortion, while living in Japan I met a lovely Philippina girl out visiting her sister, married to a Navy petty officer on the base, Yokosuka. She was there about six months, and lived with me most of that time.

        When she went back to her other boyfriend in Swtizerland, I got a letter from her with the standard image you get when they rub your growing belly with a sound generating device. She aborted.

        I don’t necessarily feel bad about myself over it, as all influence was removed from me, thousands of miles away.

        But I’ll always have to live with it anyway. Better? Worse? I don’t really know. But I’ll never forget it and I’ll always wonder how and what my life would have been otherwise.

      • Tracy on September 20, 2012 at 10:16

        You could have used ‘clear’ rather than ‘pellucid’ and saved yourself $4.50 😉

        You’re starting from a premise that abortion is morally reprehensible, and always diminishes and retards self-love. I don’t see how you could possibly demonstrate that to hold in all cases, for all people who participate in an abortion. I also don’t see how it is analogous to strangling a kitten (Is the kitten somehow going to cause my death, or result in a poor health outcome for me? Was I raped, and then given a kitten by my rapist or something?)

        There are people who don’t feel guilty, etc for having taken part in an abortion – that doesn’t mean they thought it was a grand ol’ time, yeehaw. (Mass of cells, mass of fun!) They may wish they hadn’t had to make that choice, or been in that position, they may prefer that it hadn’t happened … that doesn’t then mean they love themselves any less (although surely, some do). To your point, they may not see themselves as having behaved badly by taking part in an abortion. (Unless you are saying if they weren’t thrilled about the abortion, then they must have felt badly about it, hence a lowering of self-love?)

        Of course choices have consequences. I’ve made some choices that I felt horrible about. Definitely lowered my self-love. I’ve also (eventually) worked through, understood and forgiven myself for those choices. Improved self-love. It fluctuates, how we feel about ourselves, no?

        After all that … I don’t think I know what your overall point is!

      • mark on September 20, 2012 at 12:34

        “I imagine you didn’t wake up one day and decide to be Catholic.”

        Awesome point – This is literally impossible without it being shoved down your throat – somehow (chruch, discussion, readings).

        My daughter is 13 and has never been in church or read their “sales” literature. She seems to love everyone and is smart… weird. I insist she learns about all religion eventually in gerenal so she understands the fucked up world we live in

  22. Richard Nikoley on September 18, 2012 at 07:10

    “Go check out what happens in Palestine in the name of Judaism.”

    Actually, that happens in the name of territory, which is pretty clear. OTOH, Isreal to my knowledge has never claimed that Muslims have no right to exist.

    That said, I have long said that it’s insane for Isreal to want to reside in that snake pit of a part of the world where it’s surrounded by cultures that want to see it destroyed. Yes, I acknowledge that such lunacy is fundamentally religious based (all that “promised land” nonsense). Still, the fact remains, there are no Israeli suicide bombers I’m aware of and I don’t see mothers and father raising their children to be martyrs.

    I do support total cessation of American aid and military aid to Israel. If they want to live there, let them foot the bill themselves. Of course, I support succession of all American aid except humanitarian everywhere. No doubt our general meddling in the world exacerbates things.

    “Richard Nikolei proving once again he lives in a millenarian “war of civilisations” bubble as brought to you by Fox News..”

    It’s actually spelled Nikoley. At any rate, I haven’t seen a minute of Fox News (or any of the others) since about 2006 or 7. I guess you can’t say the same since you seem to know what’s put out there.

    • Richard Nikoley on September 18, 2012 at 07:57

      Look Kevin, this post isn’t about territory, so it’s not about the dispute in that area. It’s about the general difference, worldwide, between Muslim CULTURE and other cultures where Judaism, Christianity, et al have taken a backseat. It didn’t used to.

      That’s the distinction.

      Here, I’ll throw you a bone, though. I think the Balfour Declaration started this whole mess and it’s a shame it ever happened.

    • Richard Nikoley on September 18, 2012 at 13:21

      You’re a sucker for a conventional story, Wooo.

      Yea, it’s all about American Christianity, their suck up to Jews as “God’s Chosen People,” bla bla. Or whatever

      You need to read up a little on geopolitics and military strategy and power projection. You also might try a little thinking on all the back room dealing that goes on amongst MOST muslim nations and the US—on political and military levels and I’ve seen the latter first hand. Why else do you think I used to continually arrange diplomatic clearance for US Navy ship visits into Bahrain, Pakistan, Quatar, Dhubia, Jakarta, Indonesia, and elsewhere—including for the concurrent visits by air with dignitaries on board for talks, the sort of which don’t make the news? What’s all this geopolitics, geography, power projection about? A lot. Oli a bit. Ever heard of the Suez Canal? How about the Straight of Hormuz? How about China? Ever heard of China? (think back to the USSR, it’s that kinda deal).

      Kevin is just your average guy with a hammer and EVERYTHING is his particular nail.

      This was not about statehood. This is about culture (my post)

      …Oh, you mean the ENTIRE Muslim world is outraged of the Belfour Declaration of 1917 and its implementation to to this day that unjustly took their lands?

      Yea, really?

      Get over it. Welcome to the real world, such as it is. It’s history and it is not going to change. Move on with your lives, raise your children in some semblance of productive prosperity, because you know what you stupid Islamic fucks? NOBODY is stopping you but you. That’s right. Repeat that.

      Thanks to the both of your for making my argument. This cannot, will not ever be changed and the inability of an entire culture to not come to grips with a reality almost a century old is, well, just another sign that we’re dealing with screeching monkeys in the trees and dogshit, inferior cultures.

      Now make your next move, so I can show you for a second, third fourth time how we are dealing with dogshit cultures, precisely for the reasons of what you and that guy with only the hammer will say next about how these people have a basic inability to deal with reality.

    • Richard Nikoley on September 25, 2012 at 07:18

      “You also seem happy to talk about the interplay between culture and religion. But your forgetting an important third actor. The role of State in formulating both.”

      No, I’m making a distinction there two. I’m no far of the state, but both a degree of freedom and of religion is encoded into the US Constitution and to large degree is also practiced by western democracies.

    • Richard Nikoley on September 25, 2012 at 07:20

      “Yes, by and large, those with a honest understanding of Palestine are outraged and what took place. Muslim or otherwise.”

      Yes, and there’s lots of people outraged at what happened to the American Indians. But they’ve largely moved on and now operate gambling casinos.

      My point is not to justify the taking of lands. My point is that at some point, everyone has to move on and go about their lives.

  23. Joseph on September 18, 2012 at 07:50

    Somebody compared satire directed at Mormons with that directed at Muslims, and our different reactions, leading me to formulate the following thoughts:

    Personally, I think there is an important qualitative difference between good satire and bad. (The good kind is actually funny, with the laughter redeeming its “acidic” parts.)

    That said, there are different audiences, too. Good satire cannot exist without a good audience (i.e. an audience prepared to laugh at itself, an audience whose response to verbal criticism is not to start rioting and burning down buildings). Education and acculturation are important: people raised to take criticism rationally don’t fall apart when they get some (even if it hurts). Going on a proselytizing mission helps many LDS, I think, in that we come away from that experience knowing that we can deal with criticism (even the most rude) without resorting to childish temper tantrums (that don’t look any better when we suddenly have weapons not normally available to two-year-olds). Muslims who get offended by people making rude movies about them need to get a grip: the real problem is not the movie (making fun of them), but the attitude behind the movie (the attitude that sees Muslims as dumb, or in this case, evil).

    The reality is that people are always going to find you evil (no matter who you are: this is the same for Mormons, Muslims, Christians, Buddhists, and atheists). Given the fact that people will invariably find you evil, it is inevitable that they will treat you as an enemy (and a bad person). I don’t know about you, but I prefer enemies who make bad movies about me to enemies who fly planes into buildings I frequent. Cultivate “good” enemies. Embrace the foes who attack your ideas and leave your physical integrity alone. (To all the Muslims out there who aren’t burning anything down and couldn’t care less: I see your humanity, and I salute it. This rant is emphatically not for you.)

    • Joseph on September 18, 2012 at 07:55

      The West needs to get a grip, too, in that we need to see the difference between people who are desperate and people who are not. The predator drones need to go away, I think, unless we want to keep dealing with some really (legitimately) angry (and scared) apes.

      • mark on September 18, 2012 at 08:16

        The west is just as entrenched in religion (the US is getting nuts actually) From the Whithouse to the enormous Religious warehouses popping up everywhere.

        I’m looking forward to the religious WWIII that finally wipes us out.

    • Richard Nikoley on September 18, 2012 at 08:22

      “To all the Muslims out there who aren’t burning anything down and couldn’t care less: I see your humanity, and I salute it. This rant is emphatically not for you.”

      From 2005 – 2010 we lived a stone’s throw from an “Islamic Learning Center” in downtown San Jose. In spite of the garb and appearance, nice smiling people and I ALWAYS made a point to smile back, especially at the children. Usually, I was walking the two dogs and once I learned that it was offensive for them for the dogs to walk on their lawn (or do any business), I kept them off it and all was fine.

      They were always a bit “weird” about the two (small Rat Trrriers) dogs in general and one got the sense that they really didn’t want their children being enamored of them, but I had no problem with that and respected that as a cultural deal.

      • mark on September 18, 2012 at 09:35

        I go out of my way to walk my dog on their lawn and between their family picnics at the local park…

        It always the children who suffer and have no say in the matter – just continous mind numbing bullshit to get them to sign up early.

      • Richard Nikoley on September 18, 2012 at 10:21

        Mark, while I get it and often just had to think about something else for fear of saying something in front of the children to their parents, which is a line I will not even cross, these were neighbors. I walked the dogs by there place three time a day.

        There is value in being a good neighbor, I’ll submit, sir.

      • mark on September 18, 2012 at 10:40

        Yes, I admit – I have no f’ing patients for anything Religious these days… I apologize

        But here is a good video explaining Religion in 8 minutes: If only people questioned fairy tales…

      • Joseph on September 18, 2012 at 09:48

        I have several good friends who are Muslims, including a few Muslim atheists. They are nice people, and as they often point out to me, the vast majority of their fellow religious practitioners are poor, peaceful sheep who just want some decent pasture (which many of them never get, unlike most of us with the time to comment here).

        I grew up a religious fanatic myself, so I feel for the jihadis, too (really: it sounds arrogant and condescending, but it happens to be true, even though I have not suffered as the most unfortunate among them have).

      • Richard Nikoley on September 18, 2012 at 10:29

        One of the most gentle men I have ever known in my life is a Pakistani Muslim, and he goes back to Karachi every year. He developed a custom software CMS system for my business and because he was so good, understood the unique requirements so well, I just used him as a singlular developer. Back in the day, we’d roll out new integrations and features almost daily.

        He earned well over a half million bucks off me in those years.

    • Barbara on September 18, 2012 at 08:51

      The problem with the above statement is that satire directed at Christianity is not directed at ME as a Christian but usually at Jesus Christ.

      I don’t mind people poking fun at me as in all humility it’s probably good for me. But as I love God and want Him be respected and treated with justice as is His due, I will protest when HE is made fun of.

      I think this distinction must be made clear.

      • Barbara on September 18, 2012 at 08:53

        I was commenting on Joseph’s comment on satire a bit above.

      • Joseph on September 18, 2012 at 09:44

        From my perspective (the perspective of Gideon’s father in Judges 6:31-32 and Rabbi Gamaliel in Acts 5:38-39), God is a big boy. He doesn’t need me to defend him when other people call him a poopy-pants (or a sadist or a child-molester or a figment of somebody’s overactive imagination). If I can handle being called every name under the sun (as I have been, serving my two-year-term as a Mormon missionary back in the day), then God can take it, too — and he had better take it like a man, since I don’t worship people whose patience (I almost said humanity) is less than my own.

      • Richard Nikoley on September 18, 2012 at 09:54

        I for one have no problem with Barbara peacefully defending Her values.

      • Joseph on September 18, 2012 at 09:58

        I shouldn’t either. Forgive me if I did. My whole point was that more people should react like she does.

      • Barbara on September 18, 2012 at 11:37

        Joseph, we defend people we love when they are insulted right? I will do this every time. And maybe if you feel the same way, you’ll not stay silent next time.

        I sure hope we can come to the defence of God (and no of course he doesn’t NEED us to) simply because justice demands it.

      • mark on September 18, 2012 at 12:31

        God IS a lie… He is a direct human representation of the SUN traveling through the nights sky over time.

        I hope that didn’t hurt. Your turn..

      • Joseph on September 18, 2012 at 14:12

        I feel that people who argue (as you do) are preferable to people who blow up buildings. I cannot say that I personally care much when people insult God, any more than I care when they insult me: until their insults become physically threatening, I am not bothered by them mouthing off.

        I have had occasion to be justly angry with God myself, over the course of my life, and so I can appreciate how others (including some with better reasons than mine) feel the same way about him (particularly when he doesn’t exist, at least not in the ways that people want or expect him to).

      • LCForevah on September 18, 2012 at 10:23

        I will not respect an entity that does not exist.

      • Barbara on September 18, 2012 at 11:39

        LCForevah you don’t have to but simple courtesy should direct you not to insult Christians in a way that you know will hurt them deeply. If you chose to do so this says a lot about you.

      • LCForevah on September 18, 2012 at 15:17

        Barbara, it is manipulative to bring feelings into a conversation about reality versus the metaphysical. I do not allow people’s feelings to stop me from declaring what is right for me. When I state to believers that I find their beliefs problematic, I do it with respect for the people I’m addressing, even though I have no respect for belief of any stripe. Given the nonsense I have to listen to within my own family, it becomes an exercise in patience. I leave the religious jokes for another time. I do ascribe to doing or saying things in the right time and place. Making jokes about tapdancing jesus among nonbelievers is fine by me.

        Irish nuns, parochial school, winning rosaries for school projects, Latin traditions, English traditions, celebrating mass, daily religious instruction and debate–this represents my childhood up to junior year in high school–this is my turf.

        The fact that I no longer believe doesn’t change my history.

  24. Sean on September 18, 2012 at 09:57

    If a woman dresses provocatively and drinks too much does she deserve to get gang-raped? No, of course not. Yet many of the same people who rightly place the onus of rape on the attacker will turn all wobbly when it comes to someone being “provocative” of Muslim violence, like Salmon Rushdie, this guy who supposedly provoked all the recent violence and murders with a shitty YouTube video, or the fiasco of the Danish cartoons (almost unprinted in North America), not to mention Theo Van Gogh and numerous other examples.

    The double standard is helpfully hidden behind PC language such as ‘hate speech’, ie thoughtcrime. Makes it easy for the doublethinkers to ignore the cognitive dissonance. Ah hell, who am I kidding, there’s no cognitive dissonance, most people are too stupid and lazy to wonder at such contradictions in their thinking. Ironically, I bet most of these sheeple would list 1984 as one of the greatest novels of the 20th century and perhaps one of their favorite novels.

    • mark on September 18, 2012 at 10:45

      I prefer animal farm.

  25. Barbara on September 18, 2012 at 11:49

    Sean, I’m not sure of your point but I’ll comment on your first sentence. There was a case about 10 years ago when a young woman charged an older man with attempted rape. The judge threw out the case because this little miss had actually entered this guys trailer dressed in a pair of very very short shorts, and a very very low cut, very tight top, knowing that he lived alone, and she accepted a beer from him. He reacted like any red-blooded American man would and put the move on her. (remember back in the day when we could say things like that?)

    So no women should never be “blamed” for being raped. But dressing provocatively and THEN putting yourself in situations of DANGER could be looked at as quite different from simply walking down the street in a “provocative” dress.

    So do we provoke Muslim’s to attack us when we insult their prophet? I say we do. History tells us that this kind of action always provokes them to violence. So why do we do it? Are we just assholes? There’s a thought.

    Ya know, there has been a lot of blather here lately about Christianity. But one thing that Jesus said that resolates is “Love Thy Neighbour as Thyself.” Well, I love myself a whole lot. So I should “love” my Muslim neighbours by wanting what’s best for them. To my mind that would be that they have food, water, shelter, and civilization, and a chance to be converted to a peaceful religion. Those are the things I want for myself and loving them means that’s what I want them to have. Pretty simple.

    • Richard Nikoley on September 18, 2012 at 14:07

      “So no women should never be “blamed” for being raped.”

      Yep, absolutely.

      She could have come in, taken that beer, stripped down, got on her hands and knees with her business facing him, and then said NO. He has two choices. Sit there and look (or do whatever to himself), or ask her to leave. A man never, ever has a right to penetrate or keep touching upon receiving an unambiguous NO (and I’m not talking about playful resistance, and any man with a brain knows the difference.)

      That is the Holy Covenant.

      • LCForevah on September 18, 2012 at 16:05

        Part of the cultural problem with Islam is that what existed before didn’t survive–archaeologists go looking for it and find very little. What has happened is that cultural norms that existed before the koran have been ascribed to the koran.

        For example, the insistence that women cover themselves because men can’t help their own behavior is not really found in their holy book. Yes, women are asked to be modest–but they are not told to look like enormous hefty bags.

        This is in direct opposition to what you have just stated Richard, about men being responsible for their own behavior no matter what the provocation. Muslim women are made responsible in totality for men’s reprehensible behavior. That why in many middle eastern cultures there is no contradiction in killing the rape victim for having been raped. She dishonors the family since her sexual nature distracted some male. Her fault, not his.

    • Richard Nikoley on September 18, 2012 at 14:12

      “So do we provoke Muslim’s to attack us when we insult their prophet? I say we do. History tells us that this kind of action always provokes them to violence. So why do we do it? Are we just assholes? There’s a thought.”

      Some of us don’t think any more of it that to insult a 6-yr-old for still believing in God Lite (Santa, 2/3 fewer calories).

    • Richard Nikoley on September 18, 2012 at 14:57

      “Love Thy Neighbour as Thyself.”

      Barbara, I know why that was admonished even if you don’t.

      It’s admonished because it is a complete impossibility, as are many admonishments and doctrines (such as various thought “crimes”). The device is simple and would that most children would see through it early on and save the world a ration of grief over bad actions committed that can be traced back to inescapable guilt (from the perspective of the victim).

      Of course, it all begins with the veritable founding doctrine of the Christian faith, Original Sin.

    • Tracy on September 20, 2012 at 07:15

      Barbara: “So I should “love” my Muslim neighbours by wanting what’s best for them. To my mind that would be that they have food, water, shelter, and civilization, and a chance to be converted to a peaceful religion.”

      Why do they need to be converted to any religion at all?

  26. […] is me at Richard Nikoley’s talking about abortion in the context of nominally egoistic moral […]

  27. Simon Carter on September 18, 2012 at 14:14

    Afghanistan has an illiteracy rate of 72%. Stop and really think what that means. Have you ever known someone who could not read? 72 fucking percent!!! Now add Islam and tribalism to that and we need to walk away from that shithole ASAP.
    Women cannot vote in Saudi Arabia! Women cannot drive cars in Saudi Arabia. This is 2012! We have sold our principles for oil so our fat lazy asses can drive to Wal-Mart and buy more cheap shit from China.
    Fuck this, it’s not even worth talking about anymore.

    • Richard Nikoley on September 18, 2012 at 15:24

      Amen Simon. In some ways, I think there’s a lot of talking past each other (in terms of the culture, geopolitics, etc). But this is what I’m getting at. It’s the culture and that culture is dominated by a primitive, 14th century, dirt scratching patriarchal society that blows my mind Wooo is going to challenge me on because it’s teh oil, or teh israel, or teh whatever.

      No, it’s fucking pussy men, essentially, is what it is. They don’t want to give up their slaves and an ancient book is as good of an excuse as any.

      • LCForevah on September 18, 2012 at 16:29

        Following my thought from upthread, Muslim men are taught from a very early age to blame circumstances outside of themselves and not take personal responsibility. This is a sweeping generality as I have known Muslim men and women who take responsibility as business owners, but it remains true for too large a number of Muslim men.

        I think it was Sam Harris who wrote an article that stated that “only” five percent of the Muslim world population may be considered extremist. Well, at 1.6 billion, that makes it 80 million people that may be considered a threat to the civilized world. That’s a lot of people who can do a lot of damage.

      • mark on September 19, 2012 at 07:37

        Some very interesting posts here

      • Joseph on September 19, 2012 at 09:39

        Push the apes into a small corner and watch them explode in self-defense. I agree, Woo.

      • Richard Nikoley on September 19, 2012 at 09:52

        Ok, here’s some food for fodder for everyone. I’ll get back to other details later.

        Who and what discovered, developed and initially marketed oil in the Middle East? And what became of those eventual trillion dollar enterprises?

  28. The High Fat Hep C Diet on September 18, 2012 at 16:46

    In the Moslem world it is still 1433. What were your ancestors doing in 1433?

    One could say that judging the entirety of Islam by a few thousand disgruntled violent, mostly unemployed young men, is like judging the whole British Commonwealth on the actions of England’s football hooligans.

    We’re told that populations who’ve eaten wheat since 10,00 years ago are the most adapted to its mood-altering toxins.
    Where are these populations?
    The Middle East.
    Some adaptation.

    • Richard Nikoley on September 18, 2012 at 18:44

      Props for a funny rant from Wooo, which she will always be welcome do do. Gotta admire.

      Funny, some of the funest meals I had in France were in couscous restaurants. That stock, the chickpeas, with the cc and sausage….. I’ll suffer the rage. I’ll make sure I have a computer near by next time so I can do a truly outrageous blog. For once.

      • Richard Nikoley on September 19, 2012 at 06:59

        The bullet doesn’t impress me for its power so I never use mine anymore. So, yes, exactly what I’d do. Grind then in that first, then in your blender and introduce the eggs on high, one at a time, letting it run about 30 seconds between the first three of them.

  29. The High Fat Hep C Diet on September 18, 2012 at 18:52

    Let’s take this gag a step further; assume for moment that at least one of the genes you need for coeliac disease is also needed for religious toleration.
    Where was wheat first identified as the cause of coeliac disease? Holland. Who are supposedly the most tolerant society on earth? The Dutch. I rest my case.

    We are forgetting something – if “Mohammed the movie” had been made in Canada or Mexico, who would now give a stuff about it?
    Perhaps it has less to do with indignant religious feeling and more to do with “it’s about time to let off more anger at the bully who trampled over us to get at the oil/ bombed my village/ genetically modified my seeds/ poisoned my well/ supplied the equipment I was tortured with at the police barracks/ blew up my camel in a drone attack”.
    I’m sure there’s a bit more behind it than simple fundamentalism. This thing has quite a secular history too.

  30. mark on September 19, 2012 at 06:07

    “We are forgetting something – if “Mohammed the movie” had been made in Canada or Mexico, who would now give a stuff about it?”

    Canada has a massive Muslim population per capita – I’d be a little worried. But yes, the US has fucked with them for way to long to fit there fat asses in there SUV’s. The shit storm is going to get worse.

    But it seems like the Muslim community here is actually quite civil:

  31. Richard Burian on September 19, 2012 at 09:24

    I think the general consensus back when I was in school studying history was that the four religions in your picture (Jewish, Hindu, Buddhist and Christian) are all generally very old religions and have been in the human consciousness long enough for them to evolve to where they have now. Our last real religious wars were the Crusades, the Inquisition and various fights in Central and Eastern Europe throughout the last few hundred years (but nothing of a global scale). On the other hand, Islam is considered one of the youngest religions and if you go by dates, then they are still living their “Middle Ages/Dark Ages” period. Apparently we’re supposed to give them another 500 years.

    At least that’s how smart theologian types explained this back when I asked them.

    • Joseph on September 19, 2012 at 09:42

      So, by this logic, the fact that Mormons are mostly nice (relatively speaking) these days means that we must really be Christian after all? (If we were really a brand new religion, we would still be waging war actively against federal and state governments in the United States, the way we did in the nineteenth century?)

      • Richard Burian on September 19, 2012 at 09:43

        I would call Mormons a denomination of Christianity, yes. I’m sure lots of people don’t see it that way.

      • Richard Nikoley on September 19, 2012 at 09:59

        Mormons are Chrisitans. They simply didn’t accept that prophesy stopped 30000 years ago. In the context, perfectly following the logic.

        Mormonism is perhaps the best example of taking the logic of the religion, god and angels who hand down prophesy and go with it. That most people find it ridiculous is, I would say, well…..?

        Disclosure: my grandfather was an Idaho Mormon and I was blessed in the Oakland Temple on the hill as a child, went to Sumday school and other stuff as a kid in a local Reno church. My mother, I and my brothers were later excommunicated (my dad was Lutheran) when after dabbling in the Jehona’s Witness deal’ they both turned to fundamental born-againsim as a result of a brother’s proselytizing.

      • Richard Burian on September 19, 2012 at 10:07

        Sorry, that comment below was intended here. Misclick for the win.

      • mark on September 21, 2012 at 12:35

  32. Richard Burian on September 19, 2012 at 10:06

    The word “prophesy” has always irked me. How is it that certain people can have the temerity to claim that god speaks to them directly, giving them messages that I absolutely need to know about? I mean, I’ve been struggling with believing in anything I can’t sense directly for most of my life.

    • Richard Nikoley on September 19, 2012 at 10:13

      Well, Richard, Prophesy is simply a primitive form of manipulative practical politics. Now, prophesy ia handed down by cloisted, Ivory Tower intellectuals and tenured professors.

  33. Gabo on September 20, 2012 at 06:15

    I am an Atheist, jew-raised lad (culturally jewish, atheist, latin american) who knows a rabbi who declares he might be an atheist (for real!) and he even said it in front of a (small) congregation who even laughed. Said rabbi even admitted that he thinks god is a metaphore (there’s a recorded radio interview -it’s online- where he said that, from about 12 days ago). He even spoke of Sartre (among others) on his Rosh Hashana (jewish new year) words in the synagogue where he’s a rabbi. And he’s a very funny chap too. A lady rabbi (yes) in the same synagogue is not much different. I still don’t know of any fatwa-like threatening thing declared on his or her head.
    As for why I know of this… Well, I still do some things for my parents, especially since my dad is quite ill but still singing in a chorus a couple of times a year in that synagogue. And I find it funny to witness this rabbi saying those kind of things to some people who might find it strange, others who might find it insulting, and still others who might find it mind-provoking and insightful. All of them then saying “shana tova” to each other. Strange thing, really.

    Now, after the long intro, this is what I wanted to say:
    I love this post/page and the whole discussion/debate below it. It has A LOT of food for thought. It’s quite nutritious in that regard. Thank you all for this. Muchas gracias. And sorry for my english.

  34. G Custer on September 21, 2012 at 16:42

    Hey Rich,

    a completely random thought just crossed my mind. I consider you the Larry Flynt of the paleo world. Larry’s medium was porn magazines and yours is a health and fitness blog. However, the message is the same: freedom of thought and expression! Just don’t go getting yourself shot by some crazy gun wielding misandrist, ok!

    • Richard Nikoley on September 21, 2012 at 19:07


      “If the 1st Amendment can protect a scumbag like me, then it can protect all of you, because I’m the worst.”

      I sincerely wish people would understand that most best quote from The People vs Larry Flynt.

      Every now an then, I wonder “what would happen.” I have abut six of so loaded guns in my house, I know whee each one is (disbursed), and I am an expert marksman.

      That does in no way, however, diminish the load about Beatrice, the doggies, none of whom signed up. So, that’s my primary concern should anything like that ever come to pass.

  35. […] have 27 emails in a folder. I received all of them inside of 3-5 minutes of posting this to the group. […]

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